Veterans for Peace
Tom Sturtevant Chapter 1
August 28, 2014
Unitarian Universalist Church
Brunswick, Maine

Inspirations: Dan read poem by Ellen Bass called Pray for Peace and Richard presented our Peacemaker Award from Brunswick PeaceWorks to Doug to hold on behalf of the chapter.

Present: Clarence Smith, Richard Clement, Bruce Gagnon, Robin Spencer, Dan Ellis, Peter Woodruff, Bud Buzzell, Dave Crowley, Regis Tremblay, Doug Rawlings, Peggy Akers, Bob Lezer

Secretary Report: Minutes from last meeting accepted and are on the web site

Treasurer Report: Treasurer’s report accepted.

Membership: Now have 125 members, 92 are currently paid-up with dues.

MaineShare: Richard will take tables to CGFair for MaineShare and we will get 10 points. Decided to ask our members to raise money for MaineShare during our Oct 11-10 Peace Walk instead of doing a separate Hike & Bike fundraiser for them. Sponsor sign up sheet will be sent around by Dan to our list serve. Each member is encouraged to make donation and/or get others to donate to MaineShare putting “VFP” in the ‘For’ line of the check.

Regis on Jeju film: Regis reported that Ghosts of Jeju has been translated into Korean, Japanese, Chinese and French. He is working on a new film about the US militarization of the Pacific Islands and will travel to several countries in that region next year to interview people about their stories and their resistance.

Common Ground Fair: Sept 19-21. Richard now collecting names of members who will work at the fair during the weekend. We will share our table with BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) of Israel organization.

Belfast Peace Festival: Three of our members (Doug, Dud and Bruce) have been invited to speak on a panel at the first annual peace festival in Belfast on Sept 6.

Sounds of Freedom: Katie Norton is a musician working with vets (therapy) through music. She wants to say that she is working with our chapter in order to make networking connections easier with vets. Doug proposed we agree and was approved. Was also suggested we ask her to become an associate member.

Maine Walk for Peace & Sustainable Future/Proposed Rangeley “Missile Defense” base: Bruce and Jason Rawn have been organizing the walk that will begin in Rangeley on Oct 11 and end at Pratt Whitney F-35 fighter engine plant in North Berwick on Oct 20. The walk will underscore Maine’s growing reliance on military spending for jobs and the need to diversify/convert those weapons installations to enable us to deal with reality of climate change. The Global Network is paying Jason $1,000 to help organize the walk and VFP will cover other costs (gas for vehicles, flyer printing, banner, minimal food, etc). Buddhists from Nipponzan Myohoji have again been invited to lead the walk. Dan has put the flyer and the walk route schedule on the VFP web site. The proposed missile interceptor base in Rangeley would be an environmental disaster for that area and would also change the culture of the surrounding communities dramatically as their population could double from the base. Four states are in the running for the base: Maine, New York, Michigan and Ohio.

Bring World’s Together Confab: Doug will be doing a workshop on PTSD at this Sept 20 conference in Farmington. Must make sure we have enough chapter brochures for there and the CGFair.

Defense for Children: Doug requested the chapter give $500 for a talk at UMF about the plight of Palestinian children. Was approved.

National Convention: Richard, Rita and Doug attended the convention in Asheville. Over 300 members there including 50 post 9-11 vets. This was the 29th annual confab. Doug was named the VFP poet laureate for the coming year. Congratulations to Doug!

Next Meeting: Will meet on Sept 25 at the Buker Community Center, 22 Armory Street, Augusta